At Boskone this Weekend

February 11th, 2010

This weekend I will be at Boskone, one of the Boston-area SF conventions.

I will be participating on several panels. One at 8pm Friday and another at 11am on Sunday will focus on online reading habits and resources. Another at noon on Sunday will be about recent developments in biological sciences (rather apropos to my story “Picking Up the Spin” coming out in M-Brane SF next month).

And at 5pm Saturday, I will be hosting a reading of authors from Beneath Ceaseless Skies magazine, including Margaret Ronald, whose recent story “A Serpent in the Gears” got a great review today in IROSF.

So if you’re at the con, drop by the reading.

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A long drive, deep to left field…

February 9th, 2010

I’m delighted that my hard-SF baseball story “Picking Up the Spin” has found a home at M-Brane SF, an up-and-coming online SF magazine that got very good compliments in Rich Horton’s year-end review.

The story is a near-future look at what might happen to a ballplayer who had to undergo a genetically engineered treatment for retinal disease. It has lots of cool baseball jargon and my near-future baseball speculations (maybe someday there will be a major league team in Havana?).

The science is extrapolated from the retinal signal-transduction pathway I assisted with research on during an undergraduate summer. The scientific approach in the story also features a different angle than I’ve seen in SF before.

    [Warning: Science Content! Many science fans don’t realize how massively difficult it is to modify a biological system by changing or adding a gene. Specifically targeting one gene is trying to access a thousand base pairs of DNA among 3 billion. Even if you add a new gene, the old one is still present. The problem expands from there, as RNA transcription and translation and protein mechanics are exponentially more complex and less well understood than DNA processes. To see my neat approach that circumvented all that, you’ll have to read the story. :) ]

Despite my science background, this is the only piece of true SF that I’ve ever written. I think that may be because for me, scientific concepts and personal or character things rarely mesh for me. Character is always the most important element of a story for me, so, even in hard SF, the science must take a back seat.

The good folks at M-Brane tell me that “Picking Up the Spin” is slated for the March issue. Right around when spring training games will be starting for the new season. Play ball!

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“Keeli’s Ordeal” Lives

February 2nd, 2010

My story “Keeli’s Ordeal” is now live at Crossed Genres magazine, in issue 15. Here’s the direct link.

The magazine looks quite nice! In addition to online text, it’s also available in paper format and in several ebook file formats–visit their web-store for all the options.

I’m sharing the TOC of this issue with Barbara Krasnoff, a good short story writer I met at ReaderCon last year, and my Homeless Moon cohort Jay Ridler. If you check out my story, be sure and check out theirs as well.

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Excised Audio from Dunesteef

January 26th, 2010

The audio podcast of my story “Excision,” which appeared in Weird Tales a few years ago, is out now from Dunesteef Audio Fiction Magazine. You can check it out here.

Audio fiction podcasts I believe are one of the most exciting areas of F/SF short fiction these days. They have a growing audience, something that print short fiction hasn’t had for over twenty years, and they’re a perfect match for current technology in portable music players and internet audio distribution.

The folks at Dunesteef were great to work with. They had me tape a segment of author’s notes explaining the genesis of the story, which you can hear at the end of their reading performance. And they have this very cool cover art for the story! I love its vibe of medical-ness and blood.

Dunsteef Excision Artwork

Check out their podcast, and let me (and them) know how you liked it!

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